Enjoy Your Turn


On 3/9/2008, while watching my daughter reading at Border’s and remembering the time when she was so eager to have me read to her and I never had enough time for her then and now she seldom has time and patience to hear me talk.  I thought a lot and wrote below at Border’s:

                  Enjoy Your Turn

Read to that little ones while the ears are all yours,
Listen to what the child’s heart pours out while the heart is still open to you,
Take the little sweetie to places while the sweetie cannot drive,
Clothe the tiny body, feed the baby mouth,
Hold those child hands while the hands reach out for you.
For the moment will come, sooner than you expect, when –
The little turns big;
And the big hands are behind the wheel;
The big heart is closed to you;
And finally, you become the one reaching out for that once upon a child! 

I have shared this piece with some of my friends.  Here are their comments:
From the doctor at our clinic.  I sent this to her on her last day at our clinic, 6/12/2008
“Wow, thank you so much.  This is beautiful.  And you’re absolutely right – I feel like my daughters are growing faster every day.  Thank you for your lovely words, and best of luck to you.”

An old friend of the writer, from her teen years, 6/14/2008
“Well written.  Only when you have kids can you write sth like this. Not from one’s pen, but the heart.”

I love these comments!  Thanks for the bounty of kind words and encouragement. If my children have made my life richer, my friends have made it more appreciable. Well, so much to be thankful now.



She is learning


Yesterday I took my daughter to a nearby oriental grocery store, where she found a small box of junk food for $5.  As always, being a kind-hearted mom, I yielded to her request and bought it for her. Yet, on the way back home, I told her, “I could have saved $5 if I had not taken you to the store.”  She said, “Mom, what you say makes me feel sad.”  “All right, I don’t want to make you sad and I will stop talking.” 

I used to tell her something like this — I would feel sad if you do this or that.  Then she stops doing this or that.  Because she cares not to make me feel sad.  This time I think she uses the same trick on me.



My unique niche


My son told me I should do some research to find my own niche. I am not a good student and have been lazy doing any research.  My niche? I think I should be comfortable finding a community of parents who have experienced some forms of cultural conflicts with their American born children, like me growing up in China and raising children in America. Conflicts inevitably erupt when my Chinese culture-based upbringing meet their American cultural resistance. Being a mom caught in between two cultures, I have learned, among others, conflict-management skill is an absolute life-saver in keeping a fire under control.

By the way, if there is a competition for the best-behaved mom, I would certainly be rewarded the first prize. Because I have kept my mouth shut as much as I am aware of in front of my children’s friends, for I know how much this foreign accent mom could embarrass her children. My son once told me in his primary school years, “Mom, let me do the talking.”  I don’t need to be told twice on this.  I would save my children’s face by not working in a Chinese restaurant.  I would put on some decent clothes when I showed up in my children’s schools.  Of course, the best performance is to pretend that I did not know them in public.  To be fair, they are good children, but I have learned how to behave to save their dear faces.

Yes, this is my niche — the experience of a Chinese mom with her American born children.



My son


I told him this, “Son, I am not bragging about you.  I am just proud of you.”  To be honest, he is not perfect –he almost never cooks, nor does laundry, nor cleans up his room.  Still, I miss him greatly when he is in Boston, so far away from his Kansas home, leaving me an abundance of memories to cherish and to reflect on. I think he has done me a great favor by staying home for three weeks this summer instead of two as he originally planned.  As I often tell my children, now I should tell myself — count your blessings and be happy with what you have.

Many people give expensive gifts to their children upon their high school graduation. As a frugal mom, my gift to my dear son is the following letter, http://www.geocities.com/diemerpta/to_my_son.html

P.S. in case the link is not active any more, the owner can be reached via momwrite@yahoo.com



Welcome to the world of moms and dads!


Here’s a little background as justification for and explanation of the creation of this weblog.
First of all, the idea first surfaced in my mind during one of the conversations that I had with my college age son, during his summer break of 2008.  “Mom, since you like writing so much, why don’t you set up a blog?” I know he also means since you talk so much, have your own blog and talk there.  This I whole-heartedly accept.  My son says I like to repeat myself and say the same thing again and again and again.  So much like a nagging mom!  So annoying! I wish he could keep these words to himself.

For sometimes, my emails to him went unopened because, according to my son, they are too long-winded. This is rather discouraging and I was smart enough to have learned not to write to him any more. Who would otherwise?  Now I have my own blog! 

My daughter outdoes her brother on this. Each time I started talking, she said, “Oh-Oh, where’s my MP3 player?” Why doesn’t she call that “Block Mom’s Voice Player?” That’s what it actually is when she does not want my words to enter her ears. The youngsters either don’t have the time to hear me out or find my self-invited voice extremely unwelcome. Again, here’s my blog, serving as an outlet when my daughter puts on her “Block Mom’s Voice Player.” By the way, she is a nice girl most of the time. Most likely I have advanced into my dotage years way earlier than the rest of the humanities — the only time I have not lagged behind.

Secondly, this blog ties back to my education in humanities and social science and to so many years of my life as a parents of two.  Since the birth of my first child, I have volunteered to devote, with an overdose of maternal instinct, a large part of hours and days, unpaid of course, months and years, my time and life, to the care and education of my youngsters — watching them, talking to them, reading to them, working with them, writing to and about them, reading books about education, psychology, personal development, etc. My life and major decisions regarding job and location of my residence have been centered around their needs and their lives.  Thus, for better for worse, being a mom has literally shaped my life and defined me. To be sure, other than English, sociology, computer programming, clinic trials and other profitably engagements, this is something I have come to know best and can write about.  I am sure, all moms share similar experience.  For this, the blog also serves as a celebration of a mom’s life or those of any moms that come to visit.

Thirdly, part of my strength and energy have been nourished and furnished by encouragements that my dear friends have been so generously shone on me over the long passing years. Honest, my unreserved communications with my friends on education of my youngsters has been beneficial to both sides. They have been so kind and spoiled me with more credits than I deserved. Now it is time to credit back in the form of this blog.

Fourthly, I have been too serious with too many things in my life. By the way, I see my son carrying the same genetic trait, according to my observation,  unverified by professional. I wish we all could relax once in a while, do something we truely enjoy. Here comes the unique blog of my own, where I can laugh at myself, the fathomless well of laughter and the safest object of ridicule and sarcasm that I have discovered.

Finally, I got to have some purpose more lofty than the above ones. Here’s the ultimate driving force: a space for parents to share their experiences with their youngsters.

Oh my God, so much for a little background!  Again,  I am too long-winded.  Other people might have an  abundance of money, but I have an equally abundant amount of, not money but words.  How wise is my son!  


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